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June 2010

Distinction of 2 Different Primary Merkel Cell Carcinomas in 1 Patient by Merkel Cell Polyomavirus Genome Analysis

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Dermatology, Venereology, and Allergology, University Hospital Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany (Drs Schrama, Houben, and Becker); and University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Kiel, Department of Dermatology, Venereology, and Allergology, Kiel, Germany (Drs Thiemann, Kähler, and Hauschild).

Arch Dermatol. 2010;146(6):687-689. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2010.121

Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare and aggressive neuroendocrine skin carcinoma.1 Owing to the recent isolation of a new human polyomavirus from MCC called Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCV),2 this malignancy has attracted much attention. Meanwhile, several groups have confirmed that MCV is detectable in 70% to 80% of MCC. Herein, we report how sequencing of the MCV genome may help to discern between delayed metastasis and multiple primary MCCs.

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